October 4, 2010

IdeaScale – Empower Your Customers

Friends, family, and employees all get to sound off on their ideas about how to run your company, so why not listen to the ideas coming from your customers, too? IdeaScale is an application that can do just that—offering business owners and managers a way to solicit feedback and advice from their most loyal clients and longtime customers. Whether the topic du jour has to do with how to improve your pricing plans, which features should be added to your website, or what new dishes should be included on your restaurant’s menu, IdeaScale is an application that can facilitate all types of important conversations.

Once you answer a few simple questions about your business and chose a subdomain address, you’ll be ready to begin collecting feedback with IdeaScale. By following a link posted on your company site, loyal customers will be taken to your IdeaScale feedback page and prompted to submit their own ideas. Each idea gets a title, description, tags, and a category. Once its been posted, other customers can vote and comment on the idea, while sharing their opinions and insights into why the idea will or won’t work in a corporate setting. Ideas with the most votes get bumped up to the top of the feedback page, making it easy to determine which ideas should be implemented into your company plan and which you could do without. To get an even closer look at who’s submitting all these great ideas, add custom fields to your feedback forms asking for people’s ages and zip codes before making any new submissions.

Of course, customers aren’t the only ones who have got great ideas. Employees themselves often have a closer view of the business than anyone else, which is why IdeaScale supports private feedback communities where employees can sound off in a secure setting without being overheard by customers and clients. For restaurants, web-start ups, government organizations, and anyone else who could benefit from hearing what their customers really think, IdeaScale could be an interesting application to try.

Practical Uses:

  • Find out what your customers think of a new ice cream flavor
  • Get feedback on a newly implemented pricing structure
  • Learn what people think could help improve your business
  • Give employees a way to offer feedback anonymously

Insider Tips:

  • Create an IdeaScale widget to add to your existing website
  • Comment on certain submissions to let customers know why you will or won’t be implementing their ideas
  • Users can refine ideas posted by others with wiki-style editing
  • Let employees vent about company-wide concerns in a private feedback community

What we liked:

  • Customers can vote on which submitted ideas they like best
  • Moderators have total control over which ideas show up on the site
  • Companies can get valuable feedback from loyal clients
  • Employees can sound off without being overheard by clients or customers
  • Mobile application lets people submit ideas when they’re on-the-go

What we didn’t like:

  • Customers have to create a login before they can vote on ideas


Company Info:

  • Launched: September 2008
  • Privately Held
  • Headquarters: Seattle, Washington
  • Founded by: Vivek Bhaskaran and Rob Hoehn
  • Web site:


  • Starter plan is free
  • Basic plan is $15/month
  • Corporate plan is $99/month

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